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Panhandle native named Texas’ official musician for 2016

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An Amarillo native is the official state musician in 2016.  Joe Ely was one of eight artists appointed by the Texas Legislature according the Amarillo Globe News.  Ely began his musical career in Lubbock.

Ely says he’s humbled, and as a songwriter has always felt extremely fortunate to have grown up in an inspirational place with such a rich, compelling history filled with some of the most fascinating characters in the world.

Ely will serve a one year term.

The artist moved to Lubbock when he was 12.  He formed the Texas rock band called The Flatlanders with Butch Hancock and fellow Amarillo native Jimmie Dale Gilmore.

Nominations for state artists came from residents around the state and were reviewed by the Texas Commission on the Arts.